Essential Kit: Emergency Recharge your Smartphone

Estimated reading time: 2 mins

Does your smartphone run out of juice, often? Here is a neat solution to recharge your devices without a power outlet.

When your phone runs out of power, it can feel like a disaster. It normally happens to me when I absolutely – utterly – totally need it not to, like using GPS to find my way somewhere. I normally have battery backup – but there has been painful occasions when I’m totally out of power…

Then what do we do?

So here is a neat solution to those disasters. A hand-crank recharger that works off human power. Plugin you charger cable, connect it to your phone, and begin turning the crank.

Hey presto! Your phone is re-charged.

These things work a treat, and can re-charge most devices that use USB. No longer do we have to suffer periods of total-blackout, just when we don’t need it.

Here is a great example – the K-Tor 120 Volt 10 Watt Hand Crank Generator (pictured). This baby has enough output to recharge most portable devices, even a laptop.

Essential for all business travellers!

Do they really work?

They sure do! But don’t expect to just turn the handle a couple of times and you’re back to full charge. The power generated is like a wall socket, so your phone will recharge at the same rate as a standard re-charge. Which means, to get to a full charge, you might be turning that crank for many minutes. So they’re really only for emergency use.

That said, they work a treat.

What to look for when choosing one

There are many different models to choose from, but here are a few pointers for you:

  • If you’re an Apple user, make sure that the device outputs to the what your Apple product needs, which is often higher than other smartphones or tablets. The iPad is especially fussy
  • Look for devices that output about 10 Watts. Lower output will mean you’ve got to crank a lot more!
  • Check that the device will stand rigorous use. Some of the cheaper units are not sturdily built and are likely to break when you need it the most
  • Check that your chosen device will fit into your bag, case or pocket

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